James Cagney plays the plucky Irish crusader, Johnny Cave, who fights against corruption at the Weights And Measures Department. James Cagney is great in this movie. It shows why he was such a huge movie star
June 10, 2013 Subject:
Three Degress of Cagney
James Cagney had a wide broad of acting talents during his peak in the 1930's, 1940's, and the 1950's. We have all seen him show off his lovely pistol whipping skills in "Angels with Dirty Faces" (1938.) His singing and dancing skills in "the West Point Story" (1950.) However, in this Grand National Pictures (1936-1939) release shows his acting talents off in a different light. Instead of playing his usually 'bad' guy roles. He plays a 'good' guy in "Great Guy" (1936.) Cagney plays Johnny Cave, the head inspector of New York's Department of Weights and Measurements. If you have ever been cheated by 5 cents in gas or did not receive those 10 plums you paid for, Cagney is the guy to set it straight. Along the way, he tries to keep his girl, Mae Clarke, happy and with him when he tries to bust her up to no good boss. A crime thriller that will keep viewer on the edge of their seat.
January 3, 2012 Subject:
Cagney for Prez
Cagney in this role would have made a great Prez. He couldn't be bought off. Sticks to his guns, the girls like him. He's working as an inspector at the Dept. of Weights and Measures and won't be swayed into breaking the law no matter who leans on him. A gem of a movie.
July 3, 2011 Subject:
Great Guy Review
Interesting video about an imperfect guy who stands up for what's right. Can't remember any terrible immodesty in it.
April 8, 2011 Subject:
Great film, questionable title
First the bad: As Ella mentions, the title is quite pointless. One of the characters uses it within a few minutes, but other than that it's pretty pointless.
The film itself is above average for Grand National pics. Ordinarily I'd give it 3, but making the setting for the corruption Weights and Measures is worth an extra star for creativity. Some of the cheats shown are pretty blatant (lead weights in frozen chicken!), but all are interesting. The entire W&M angle is well integrated, but the second half unfortunately turns into a kindof cheap detective story.
Finally, the comic relief character (Aloysius) is lame. Not as bad as Vince Barnett in other Grand Nationals, but still adds nothing.
Worth the hour or so, without question.
July 7, 2010 Subject:
Light weight but reasonably interesting and fun Cagney crime movie.
July 7, 2010 Subject:
James Cagney is without a doubt one of our true national treasures. He is what this country s made of and made for. A triple threat. Dance, Sing, Act. And intelligence to go along with it.
October 3, 2009 Subject:
Great Guy in Great Guy
Little known but typical 1930's good guys v bad guys entertainment with the great JC on the right side of the law for once.
A strong supporting cast featuring Mae Clarke who got the grapefruit in the face in Public Enemy.
July 4, 2009 Subject:
what a movie
James Cagney in his early days , what a role , i enjoyed watching it all way thur , cheers .
March 8, 2009 Subject:
Hail the Conquering Bureaucrat!
A real gem, one of the best films I've seen on IA. Reminds us that, beyond playing gangsters, Cagney was a great verbal and physical comedic actor. Here he is just dynamite as Johnny Cave, the crusading bureaucrat from the Department of Weights and Measures, keeping the scales honest for New York's grocery shoppers. The entire cast gives it their all. The dialogue crackles along, and so does the action. Some wonderful scenes of Cagney foiling would-be weights and measures scams, negotiating wedding details with his no-nonsense fiancee, and going toe-to-toe with corrupt politicians. Beyond all the fun, there's also a serious message - government officials should protect the little guy, not line their pockets with graft. The horrendous title is truly a mystery. Couldn't the studio be bothered to spend even five seconds coming up with something decent? "The Measure of a Man" or "Scales of Justice," perhaps?
Reviewer:The Bryson Bandit
February 8, 2009 Subject:
Whadda site, this is!!
Just got my "card' & have been enjoying the many classics. This movie is very, very entertaining. Cagney was a damned fine actor!!
December 28, 2008 Subject:
Just joined the archive,and what a great idea, i love cagney and the old but superb scripts.
Reviewer:Violet Red Bile
March 20, 2007 Subject:
Well worth watching and entertaining. Better than a lot of new things on TV.
March 14, 2007 Subject:
Pretty great guy
Not a bad movie at all.
Retired boxer accepts an appointment to serve as head of the Bureau of Weights and Measures. He discovers that his organization is corrupted.
Cagney tough guy stuff, you'll like it.